My grandmother always made Lebkuchen for Christmas, and I have her recipe. I can only imagine the expense involved, with all of the spices. My mother's family was not rich, so I'm sure making the cookies for Yule put a crimp in the food budget, but they were a "must." My mom taught me the finer points of making them.
My daughter Valerie always said she didn't like them, but while she and I and my granddaughter Abby made cookies this week, Valerie and Abby were both dipping into the Lebkuchen. Ah, yes, that German blood came to the fore!!
When I went out on the internet to look for pictures, I'm thinking that mine are as pretty as any out there! Here is a picture of my version. My mom's were cut a bit different. They were oblongs, not diamond shaped like mine are. But we must all put our own twist on our holiday traditions, right? Happy Holidays!